Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Anaphora Poem

Hi Poetry Jammers,

I have what I think is a very interesting prompt for you today. And that is to write an Anaphora poem, and it is not as hard as you may think. Never heard of an Anaphora poem? An Anaphora is "the repetition of a word or expression several times within a clause or within a paragraph". In poetry the repetition of the phrase can be just at the beginning of each line, setting the tone as a meditation or a mantra, or it can be utilized more subtlety within the poem. The poem can be free verse or prose style. If this still is not clear, consider some of the repetition in William Blake's poem "The Tyger." Note the repetition of the word "what."

What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

Another example is Shakespeare's "Sonnet 66" Note the repetition of 'and.'

Tired with all these, for restful death I cry,
As to behold desert a beggar born,
And needy nothing trimm'd in jollity,
And purest faith unhappily forsworn,
And gilded honour shamefully misplac'd,
And maiden virtue rudely strumpeted,
And right perfection wrongfully disgrac'd,
And strength by limping sway disabled
And art made tongue-tied by authority,
And folly--doctor-like--controlling skill,
And simple truth miscall'd simplicity,
And captive good attending captain ill:
Tir'd with all these, from these would I be gone,
Save that, to die, I leave my love alone.

A few more examples:

Allen Ginsburg's poem "Howl"

Walt Whitman's poem "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking"
Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking

If you are looking for the 'bottom line' for this prompt, use repetition:  repetition of a word, repetition of a phrase to intensify feeling, itensify emotion, or ....... just because.  Repetition of any kind counts!

We hope you will write a NEW poem for this prompt, and also that you will visit the poems of other poets.  It really IS all about community and reciprocity.

Link your poem using Mr. Linky below, and be share to leave a comment!

Prompt provided by Mary who blogs at In the Corner of My Eye.


  1. interesting mary...will see what i can get cooking....

  2. I think I might have jumped the date a bit here but at least I got something done and posted for this very interesting prompt! As I was working on several tries for this challenge, I realized that repetition give a kind of soothing rhythm. I also noted that I inadvertently have been posting a number of sunset photos of late. Guess I just like those orange skies.

  3. alright, i am in the jam. some obvious but a bit more subtle repitition through out.

  4. I dug up one I wrote awhile back that fits well.

  5. I am also resurrecting a poem I wrote in 2005 ~~ while caring for my mother who suffered with Alzheimer's .. I never posted it on Poetry Matters. Now seems like the appropriate time.

  6. well there you go, Mary.....I suppose I exaggerated a bit with the concept of the prompt and I confess I have refurbished the words ....thanks for the venue


  7. I posted a poem with repetition in it today and Dana Bug told me about your prompt so I thought I'd join the two together and add my link.

  8. As an adminstrator of Poetry Jam, I wish people would write and link new poetry rathert than something that was written in the past, in the spirit of this site. There is a whole week. Please, friends, TRY to link NEW work here rather than something you have written (and think it works) in the past. There IS time. Thank you.

  9. I am hooked on this site. You are good. I especially appreciate the work here this week. And yes Mary, my poem is new. I had no idea what I was going to write about and then i heard Ruth's guitar chord in the night and it all fell in. The magic of poetry and what brings it on still astonishes me.

  10. First time here at the Jam. Brian and you Mary, led the way. :)

  11. Glad to see so many first-time visitors here..and thanks to those of you (like Brian and Dana) who have led others here! Lots of good poetry is being shared here this week. Don't forget to visit some of the others who post....as everyone enjoys comments.

  12. I loved this prompt... sorry so late. Thank you!!

  13. Wonderful prompt Mary! Hope everyone has a great weekend. :-)

  14. Intriguing form indeed! Very enjoyable. thank-you Mary.

  15. A new poem for your consideration... Fun prompt!

  16. Very interesting form. Tongue is firmly in cheek with this offering!

  17. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful form of poetry! It inspired me to write a new poem. I just posted it on my blog!

  18. Loved this. Thank you!

  19. So inspiring these last two posts. I have been on a short blogger break, but hope to be back in the swing of things with the next post. Thank you for hosting and coming up with amazing challenges. I might even do these a little late if that is OK.

  20. I'm so glad I crossed paths with the link to this inspiring Poetry Jam!! I had a great time with this one mixed in a haibun format for fun and enjoyed using repetition. Thank you!

    1. http://wordrustling.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/if-i-could-have-one-wish/

      Here's another that I "wished," into existence! Your Anaphora form got me on a fun repetitive kick! Smiles!

  21. i got here sooner than i expected, Mary, and with an entirely different poem! {smile} i still haven't finished the one i originally planned to link. i was not happy with the poem i wrote Tuesday, so i re-wrote it and discovered it's an anaphora poem ~ one of my favorite forms, but i'm sure it was your prompt in the back of my mind...

  22. i couldn't resist posting the poem i originally started for this prompt {and Peggy's} ~ sorry it took so long.

    i'll be back tonight to visit more of the others.
    thank you, Mary!!!!


After you post your poem and comment, please take the time to visit poems of other poets! People will add poems throughout the week, so check back every couple days to catch what is new.